A nice 10 minute video of Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet, showing a fair amount of game play, was released at PAX East recently. I’ve been waiting and watching this game for years now, and the video shows just how polished and beautiful it is.
However, I am a little nervous. Right or wrong, I originally pegged this as a shmup. As you can see from the video, though, there are a lot of different game mechanics being utilized. There are puzzles to solve, and items to collect, in what appears to be a quest for the next movie? Not sure how that will work, but I’m still holding onto the hope that there’s an “arcade” game mode included. From the video, it looks like you can get through sections without having to shoot a lot of the enemies. You also shoot on all azimuths, it’s an arena shooter with a guide indicating which direction to fly. I imagine it’s using the dual sticks, so will flying and shooting be floaty and less precise?
Still, it’s absolutely beautiful. You can clearly see Michel Gagné’s creative inspiration behind this. It’s not easy to mix other media into games, and a little worrisome at times. There really is a place, though, for “games as art”. I’m hoping this is also falls into the “games as games” niche, too.